Increasing your fluid intake

Appetite for Life

Increasing your fluid intake

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Why do I need to drink fluid?

  • To replace the fluid you lose every day from sweating, breathing and going to the toilet.
  • To prevent constipation and to help your kidneys work well.
  • To prevent dehydration (your body getting too dry).

How much fluid should I drink?

  • Don’t wait until you are thirsty - drink often throughout the day.
  • Try to drink at least eight glasses a day.
  • Drink more if you are being active or if it is a hot day.
  • Drink more if you have been vomiting, have diarrhoea, or have a fever.

What fluid is best?

  • Water is best as it is healthy, cheap and easy to get.
  • Other fluids include milk, tea, coffee, juice, soup, custard and jelly.

Handy tips

  • Flavour a jug of water with lemon juice or slices of fruit and keep it in the fridge.
  • Take a bottle of water with you when you go out.
  • Have a jug of water and a glass on the table at meal times.
  • Homemade icy poles/popsicles are a great way to get more fluids in during hot weather. Try using a mix of fruit juice and water.
  • Not drinking enough can make a weak bladder problem worse. Talk to your GP or continence nurse if you are worried.

This general advice was accurate at the time of publication (June 2020). For more information about nutrition and your individual needs, see your GP or an Accredited Practising Dietitian.